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Posted by on Feb 20, 2013 in Blog | 26 comments

Child gets suspended for being an atheist

Kindergartner Stands Up to Bully

Special Thanks to Atheism Resource
 

The following story is based on a TRUE event.  The names of the people involved have been changed to protect their identity.  YES… THIS IS 100% TRUE.

This happened to the 6 year old son of a friend of mine today (we’ll call him Zach):

“So this kid was discussing Jesus to my son at school. Zach told him that he didn’t believe in God. The boy told him the story about Jesus dying and coming back to life. Zach’s response? ‘Jesus is a zombie!?!?’ And the boy went further saying that Jesus helps those in need. Zach asked why Jesus wasn’t helping [them] (Mom got laid off for having students in a college course write about atheism), and the kid said only ‘special people’ get his help. Zach said it was apparently like Paranorman (the movie). The kid pushed Zach, called Zach the devil… Zach defended himself and gave the kid a black eye. Both kids were suspended.

As we were leaving, Zach asked the boy, “Where is your god now?”

The fight was just usually a one day suspension but Zach argued with his principal when she suggested that Zach respect others religious beliefs. He asked about those who don’t believe in the zombie guy and his god. She told him that people should respect others’ religions and that’s final. He told her she was wrong. So an extra day was put on Zach’s suspension.”

What was the punishment from his mom? Well, after explaining how violence doesn’t solve anything and that when something like this happens he should use his words instead of his fists.  But since he was defending himself, standing up to a bully, and defending his stance on Jesus she decided he would get an ice cream sundae!

Thoughts? In my opinion the principal should tell the other student that preaching belongs in church. She needs to respect Zach’s right to NOT be preached to at school.

What are Christian families thinking when they indoctrinate a child to the point of fighting violently for the cause?  Are they equating sword and stone with the bible and a non-believer? Maybe the violent imagery is starting to sink in earlier?  I remember growing up and being told to be a Christian Soldier.  My sword was my bible and my words were the stones; but if push came to shove (literally) then you should start attacking that person personally. I remember time and time again during church camps how much they pushed and pushed us to proselytize to each and every person and to not let up.  Even to the point where harassment was ok.  We were told to push our beliefs on the other person. This is what it can lead to.  I am proud of Zach for what he did and I think we should encourage our children to stand up for themselves (not violently) in the face of organized religion.  Reward our children for being intelligent, critical thinkers who enjoy life not constrained by the rules of organized religion. I’m glad my daughter will not have to suffer the shame and guilt I did growing up. And even more proud that this little boy is part of the catalyst for change.

 

UPDATE: 2/21/2013

The Christian child’s parents made their child apologize to Zach.  They t

old his parents that their child shouldn’t have pushed Zach and that they would talk to the principal to ensure equal punishment since both children fought and it was their child that didn’t respect a person’s beliefs or lack thereof.

Also Zach’s mother approached the Super Intendent of the school to take off the extra day of suspension for her son.  She made sure to report what the principal had said and that the principal needs to be reprimanded in this matter so it doesn’t occur again. In the end Zach had the extra day taken off and had a great day with his Mom.

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